Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 31.djvu/78

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70 Southern Historical Society Papers.

to give me their red and blue silk dresses and to send them to Cap- tain Colin McRae Selph, Quartermaster, at Richmond (Captain Selph is now living in New Orleans), where he was assisted by two young ladies, Misses Hettie and Constance Gary, from Baltimore, and Mrs. General Henningsen, of Savannah, and Mrs. Judge Hop- kins, of Alabama. The Misses Gary made battle-flags for Generals Beauregard and Van Dorn, and, I think, for General J. E. Johnston, and they made General Beauregard' s out of their own silk dresses. This flag is now in Memorial Hall, New Orleans, with a statement of that fact from General Beauregard. General Van Dorn's flag was made of a heavier material, but was very pretty.

MADE FROM SILK DRESSES.

Captain Selph had several of these flags made and sent them to me at Manassas. They were distributed by order of General Beau- regard. One flag I had made and gave it to the Washington Artil- lery. They have it yet.

My wife, who was in Richmond, made a beautiful flag out of her own dresses and sent it to a cousin of hers who commanded an Ar- kansas regiment. This flag was lost at Elk Horn, but was recaptured by a Missouri division under General Henry Little.

It being impossible to get silk enough to make the great number of flags needed, I had several made out of blue and red cotton cloth. I then issued a circular letter to the quartermasters of every regiment and brigade in the army to make flags, and to use any red cloth suitable that they could get. Generals Beauregard and John- ston, being good draughtsmen, drew their own designs.

The statement going the rounds that this battle-flag was first de- signed by a Federal prisoner is false. No living soul except Generals Beauregard and Johnston and myself knew anything about the flag until the order was issued to me to have them made as soon as it could be done.